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Star Trek: 50 artists 50 years

REVIEW: 50 artists provide their own unique take on the long-running sci-fi show in this anniversary collection.

Our Verdict

Five decades of Star Trek are celebrated in this large-format art book. While the artistic quality is a bit hit and miss, there are enough worthwhile contributions to keep Trekkies happy.

For

  • Beautiful large format
  • Wide selection of artists
  • Contribution from Leonard Nimoy
  • Insightful artist Q&A

Against

  • Mixed bag of art quality

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the original Star Trek series, 50 artists plus a few famous fans and the late Leonard Nimoy have contributed a range of art to this book. Entries come in a range of formats: everything from vintage posters (opens in new tab) and photos to sculptures, comic strips, textiles and more.

The most striking thing about the book is its tall, portrait format (it’s over 37cm tall). This suits the artwork, most of which is created in similar dimensions, and it makes you think more art books could try this approach.

When it comes to the art itself, it’s a mixed bag. We were impressed by the propaganda-style poster by Lucasfilm concept designer Amy Beth Christenson; the upcycled timepiece fashioned by commercial sculptor Sue Beatrice; the fun comic strip created by Mick Cassidy, a character designer for Family Guy; and the dramatic oil painting of Captain Picard by portrait artist Paul Oz, to name but a few.

A detail from Mick Cassidy’s 16-panel tribute to the original series

A detail from Mick Cassidy’s 16-panel tribute to the original series

But while some other contributions weren’t to our particular taste (the word ‘cheesy’ occasionally sprang to mind), there’s so much variety, plus insight from the Q&As contributed by each artist, that no Star Trek fan should be disappointed.

This article was originally published in ImagineFX (opens in new tab) magazine issue 142. Buy it here. (opens in new tab)

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The Verdict
6

out of 10

Star Trek: 50 artists 50 years

Five decades of Star Trek are celebrated in this large-format art book. While the artistic quality is a bit hit and miss, there are enough worthwhile contributions to keep Trekkies happy.

Tom May is an award-winning journalist and editor specialising in design, photography and technology. Author of the Amazon #1 bestseller Great TED Talks: Creativity (opens in new tab), published by Pavilion Books, Tom was previously editor of Professional Photography magazine, associate editor at Creative Bloq, and deputy editor at net magazine. Today, he is a regular contributor to Creative Bloq and its sister sites Digital Camera World, T3.com and Tech Radar. He also writes for Creative Boom and works on content marketing projects.